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tv   [untitled]  CSPAN  April 7, 2010 1:00am-1:30am EDT

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and he was 15, she was 14. live in societies that didn't allow them to survive, they couldn't protect them. and it's so interesting that i feel i embody both of them because of that, i'm the same age as emmett till and i was born the same year. his death affected me because what it taught me, even though i do about racism, and another copy of the reptile and the cradle for racism. but at 14, his murder taught me what my country to set the, thought of me, a person of color. and anne frank's murder and the murder of 6 million taught me humanity to man. ..
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eckert humanity and that is the
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beginning of the process of them starting to marginalize or a murder or eliminate them so you of some who want to destroy people as we saw with hitler and others who want to dominate the blacks in this country for industrial purposes for their slave labor or for entertainment or avert it might be. you have the oppressor who does the same thing in each case and the first thing is to reduce you to something less than a human being. so what we do is to say that can take place especially in economic tough times whenever there are economic stresses people without jobs, people without hope they look to blame other people and scapegoat and it's up to us to speak out against that saying we know we have economic difficulties right now but what we have to always hold on to is our humanity and not allow whatever impulses might lie buried deep in a word
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dna we have to suppress those and talk about who we are as human beings and what that means in terms of response to a witty to speak out and not allow the haters to get the megaphone and star dominating the airwaves over the conversation without challenge. >> guest: our beloved martin king used to say i bald remember the hateful words of my enemies. i will remember the silence of my friends. >> host: do you think this particular juncture in history sometimes we are being =to quiet and solemn and we see things happening to people and no one is saying a word. at one time we had unbelievable writers, investigative reporters and journalists and politicians who, on the scene.
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>> guest: you can be penalized for talking about race if you are black. i've lost many jobs for standing up with what was right. i would hope if i were a white woman i would stand up against injustice. when i worked in boston as the television personality i was telling you about i was living in the not so finest hour. when a white mothers were stunning black children are in school buses. i think i'm the only one who remembers that. i can't find any footage on that. john, you remember that, don't you? >> guest: yes. >> guest: so it is that -- is so many other things i remember that make me wonder again is it in our dna that it's something that has to be managed and yes we've come a long way but with a lot further to go just as we were saying the president seems like he can't talk about racism. he has extra security. he's had more threats on his life. we are all worrying about the motivations of the tea parties,
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i don't want to say that from. >> guest: i think we can keep that separate for the time being. >> guest: look at our history. >> guest: that is a separate discussion in terms of linking everybody in. >> guest: i didn't say everybody. >> host: but do you think if something is in bed did in the very famous our society that it is in grave and we must continue to work every single day, every hour, every minute, every second, every breath. >> guest: the the the history to hundred 44 years of slavery about 150 years of apartheid. how do we let go of that so easily? that is still in office. when we go to school to study we have to go to a book to study math and english.
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we don't have to go to a book to study race and our place in this country. we know the rules. somehow blacks were the rules of what our so-called place is and expectations and what we can train for and whites have their place and we know it, we all know it. i remember being in my first year of college we shared classes together but when it was time to go on the date we decided based on race. we didn't see anything but we knew the rules. it's in engaged culturally and as far as humanity is concerned we are discriminated in the positive sense. we know the difference and people like to be with people like themselves that they are most comfortable with but that shouldn't give them the right to hurt and deny opportunities of others. >> host: do you think that we have come to the point where another generation of the special young people, young
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blacks and whites, latino, native american, that they have come -- they are born in a different time and period and are sailing against the wind blowing against the paths and they are not tied down carrying this heavy load of baggage. >> guest: that's good but they shouldn't remember the baggage is carried, they shouldn't forget that it couldn't recur and come back. we think the nazis are gone. we have to remember the shooting at the museum the day my plea was at a dress rehearsal that its underground. it never goes away so we have to be vigilant. freedom isn't free. you have to fight for it every day. >> host: i want to come back to the play because i think there's important play to have people to see to have this conversation between anne frank
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and emmett till. do you provide an opportunity for young people and others to engage in dialogue and questioning? >> guest: janet does. she returns almost all of the performances and then has a q&a period following the discussion where the audience can say what did they think, what did they agree or disagree with, what about the historical lessons involved and so she's in her element following the plate. >> guest: i am frustrated third grade teacher. i really wanted to teach school and i wrote the play for young people the same ages as anne frank and emmett till. we have to get to their mind and heart while they are young by the time they get to be our age they are shaped and formed with the bias and prejudice it's hard to come rain that bill, but i wrote it for the children because they are the future and they should be less burdened with debt and i lost my train of thought earlier when i wanted to
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make the point that a lot of people, and i can say black people, younger people who say that there for days and 46 children they are aware of the history but they don't want to burden their babies with it. it's almost like saying there is a santa claus, everything is alright but there isn't a santa claus. race is alexis and persists and at some point parents are quick to have to determine when they share this burden of history, this societal problem, this cancer but we have called racism in society. it's been -- jim crow has been redesigned. it's more often to something else. we called it something when you and i were kids and now is called something else. >> guest: michele alexander of the last conference has written a book called the new jim-crow, nasa incarceration and the age of color blindness. it's a very powerful book talking about the jim-crow who lives incarceration as opposed to segregation in sleeper.
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>> host: citizen a different form. >> guest: we have lots of work to do. >> host: we must continue to work and i really want to thank the two of you for your great work, you're great leadership, your vision for your inspiration. i have enjoyed being with you and continue to tell the story. continue to build one american, for we are one people, one family, the american family. >> guest: keep working on capitol hill to make it a reality. >> host: thank you. thank you so much. >> guest: thank you, john.
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high node with the challenge is and we are in a unique position to go to work. what we need this policy makers in washington to develop a road map so we can get it done. >> something about energy policy
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that he would like to talk about on your blog? at the new c-span video library you can search it, watch it, quebec and share it. over 160,000 hours of video from yesterday or ten years ago, every c-span program since 1987. the c-span video library. cable's latest gift to america. next on booktv, author simon johnson on the role of large banks in the 2008 financial crisis. the mit professor and former chief economist at the international monetary fund has co-authored the book "13 bankers" which blames consolidation into the financial sector for the recession. the stock of the center for strategic and international studies in washington is a hour-and-a-half. good evening. before we began i will ask you to please turn off your phones as a courtesy to the speaker and
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all begins at home and fellow listeners to night. my name is taibbi and on behalf of the board and the members of the world affairs council washington, d.c. i welcome you this evening. we are pleased to host simon johnson, who with his co-author james clark has published a book "13 bankers" the wall street takeover and the next financial meltdown. the world affairs council brings to these advanced offers tax, diplomats, journalists, academics, government officials and yes, sometimes even bankers to discuss with our audience is the main international issues of the time. over the course of the last two years we come back again and again to what is now being referred to as the great recession and to the financial crisis that led to it and have heard from and will continue to present speakers who will help us understand what happened and why and what the implications and indications are for america's position in the world as a result for u.s. relations
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with others one can think obviously of the u.s.-china relations and the implications for america's long-term ability to project power and influence. the world affairs council is up comer upcoming programs include fred pearce. next tuesday evening he will be speaking about his new book the coming population crash and the planets surprising future. and i will 27th we will hold paul cole you're free book the plundered planet by oxford university prez sprick i hope you will all be able to join for the stevens as well. tonight we host professor simon johnson. he is the ronald eckert professor of entrepreneurship at mit sloan school of management and a fellow -- senior fellow the peterson institute for international economics in washington, d.c.. he's the co-founder of baseline scenario focusing on the world
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economy and he's a member of the congressional budget office panel of economic advisers. in in january of this year he joined the huffington post as contributing business sector. prior to joining the faculty of mit, dr. johnson was the chief economist from the international monetary fund. he received his ph.d. from mit, holds an m.b.a. from the headers of manchester and be a from oxford. following remarks professor johnson will be taking questions from the audience so if you have a question i asked you to wait for the microphone that will be brought around to you in order that the video equipment will be able to pick up the question. please join me in welcoming professor simon johnson. [applause] thank you very much, everyone for taking time on this beautiful summer evening of early april to come and listen to a talk in doors.
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i would like to talk to you obviously about the financial system and the situation we find ourselves in today and i think this is a very good day and a moment to have this conversation. i just came from capitol hill from one of many briefings in sure going on right now people are grappling with the question of what legislation should be passed or not passed that will try and prevent a major financial meltdown from happening again. we faced in september, 2008 as you know, and the enormous economic and financial calamity and it seems only reasonable and completely consistent with the nature of american democracy that we would fix this. something that happened we can argue about the details, that is
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very space of less. we have an administration packed with experienced professionals. we have a process that has had a good track record of 200 years of taking on and facing down major problems. so where are we on fixing the system that got us into so much trouble? well, i would say quite honestly, quite bluntly and hopefully we will discuss this as we go through the evening i would say we are nowhere. we are at square's you know. the legislation before congress does not fix in my view the essence of the problem, the heart of the matter in september, to those in the and the months that followed and in march 2009 when 13 bankers came to the white house to be saved.
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the essence of the problem is known as and accurately known as too big to fail. the 13 banks and bankers who represented them were saved unconditionally by the obama administration. and when you talk to senior people in the obama administration, and i do talk to them and take them very seriously. i don't know if they take me seriously but they do talk to me. they say they had to save the 13 batres -- the city had to fight save the financial system and i agree. our economy cannot function without credit, i think you know that but they insist they had to save these 13 bankers, their jobs, their bonuses, pensions, the perks, the board of directors, the staff, the
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empire, the attitude. they couldn't ruffle the feathers on their backs. they don't sit there on their backs to to get the idea. they couldn't disturb a hair on the head without causing a deep recession and increasing the major financial. that is not true and in the liquigas of r. dee till why we think the government is an administration had other options in march of last year but just assume that it's true for a moment that they are right and that is an accurate statement of fact. that's extraordinary. that means we have a small number of financial institutions, small number of people we essentially have the ability to export money and various other support from the state from that's incredible.
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that's not without precedent we will talk about a historical look simple as we go through the evening but that's terrible. if the banks are so big you can't allow them to feel that is scary but if you must save them without disturbing anything about their incentives or attitudes, you have an enormous problem. but me tell you one of my punch lines in the book and one of the key points of trying to hammer down the largest banks will see the largest six banks because it does come down, the largest six banks have a balance sheet total assets the size of the bank 63% of gdp. that's pretty big. what were they before the crisis weeks to those of five, 2006, 2007 they were smaller, 56, 58% of gdp. what were they in 1995, same
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banks and predecessors. 17% of gdp. they are getting bigger. of course they are getting bigger. they will were bailed out, the cost of funding today in the credit markets is estimated accurately to be between 75 to 80 basis points lower, that's .752.8 percentage points. that is a big funding advantage. jamie dimond the ceo of jpmorgan chase more of the most successful banks recently said in a letter to the shareholders this week if we get big because we win, because we are good we should be able to reach any size we want. that's the free market. well that's not the free market we do have a free market, we have a two big to fail on a fair and vintage if you run a massive bank, and i'm assuming none of you do because they don't
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usually come to hear me talk. [laughter] but would be happy to hear the be made if anybody is here. if you have a massive bank you have a tremendous unfair advantage. you are too big to fail. you will be saved in the credit market recognizes that and of course you only get bigger. there is nothing in jamie dimond's decision as the jpmorgan chase that says he's responsible for american or global financial stability. i haven't seen the description by a confident, the decision is to make money for his shareholders and his colleagues a jpmorgan chase. we can discuss how well he does but certainly the insiders are done. you've seen from 2,009 total compensation on wall street was higher than it's ever been except compensation was down a bit but the compensation working the banks was up.
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the ceo of wells fargo just got a big -- we see the details of a cash payout in 2009 cash which is what the administration asked them not to do that march 2009 president obama said to the banks please be careful, don't take reckless risks and we said please rain in the compensation. none of which they've done. john got paid a very big cash salary which is exactly contrary to the at ministration is asking. they want compensation. when questioned about why he would get so much cash a spokesperson for wells fargo said we had a very good year in 2009. they were saved by the american tax payer by the excessive generosity certainly generosity of this administration.
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it's extraordinary the attitude of these people and nothing i say, nothing in the book is vindictive, nothing is intended to get back up these people this is just forward-looking. let's talk about the future we can argue about the extent to which the big banks perceive themselves to be too big to fail before september 2008, that is an interesting discussion but that's not my focus or the focus of the book. the question is now do they think they are too big to fail. goldman sachs fluctuate as about $800 billion. if goldman sachs failed, if goldman sachs had a rock and i don't know the extent you follow this on a daily basis but greek bond spreads reduce and more trouble quicker than people were anticipating who knows what kind of exposure the big banks have for example for their durham evidence of balance sheet
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transactions. i'm not saying they are in trouble but it's a goldman sachs for example it's a big rock today, tomorrow could they fail? could they go bankrupt? no. absolutely not. the consequence would be perceived as too dramatic and dangerous to read what about the bill passes? if this legislation in the form correctly proposed for the discussion in the senate, what if that passes or something close to that? would they let goldman sachs failed? with eaglen to bankruptcy? no. not in my assessment and i'm fully aware of this makes some of my friends on total -- capitol hill upset when i say it. i used to work the imf. the job as i understand it is to tell you the harsh reality. unfortunately they can't articulate that with regard to the united states so i will do
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it. [laughter] it is a nasty truth. it's very unpleasant. unsympathetic to people pushing through. we are not there yet. so where are we? how we get here and where should we go looking forward? treasury secretary geithner says we just had a 30 year -- some basis for the year flood. on usual, bad luck, we should take action in case of the next time. but 40 years doesn't sound too bad. it's a man is trenton to the to interesting thing. former german paulson says four to six years, jimmy dimond had jpmorgan chase says every five to seven years, larry summers of four to eight years, you get the picture. something happens in the financial system with
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regularity. how big will it be next time that's the key question. geithner says there are rare but that assumes we are looking at random occurrences and we haven't changed the structure. i would say that the levees that protect against the flood have been undermined the past 30 to 40 years and we should worry about the more regular sharks identified barras paulson, mr. diamond and mr. summers hitting us before we had a chance to strengthen the levees and we have that strengthened the levees as i think you know because it plays in the financial sector and the allies do not want reform. they see it as contrary to their interest and is contrary to the people who run the bank's. secretaries geithner also says we will not lose very much money on the rescue package. we might actually make money on
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the program that injected capital the biggest banks if you recall. if we lose money on that it will be because of the car companies and because of aig. that's not the right one way to think it is 8 million jobs lost since december, 2007. that's dramatic, and necessary and we are going to struggle with high unemployment going forward. you can also worry that the federal reserve had to do and what that has gone to the credibility of the federal reserve going forward that is an interesting and very important discussion but i would focus on the fiscal costs on the balance sheet was haven't. what is the increase in the net to government debt relative to gdp, a look chichester to the economy held by the private sector. that is the core measure i would focus on of how much the government is indebted.
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this is 40% of gdp before the crisis, and i am on a panel of economic advisors to the budget office. and when to give you my numbers, not their numbers but i would say they are moving in my direction. my estimate is we will double the debt to gdp and go from 40 to 80% as a result of this crisis and all the measures the government was forced to take in order to reduce the likelihood we get a massive depression and make sure it turns only to be a great recession, portable recession. but i think it would have been worse without those counteracting measures. that is a big increase in debt. that's not enough to sink the country. that's not enough to cause a crisis%, but it's completely unnecessary, unwarranted if you think of the


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